General safety information for garage doors and electric operators.

"TOM CAT'S SAFETY COLORING BOOK FOR KIDS" - .pdf file (courtesy of Chamberlain/Lift-Master)



If you are considering purchasing a new garage door or just evaluating the safety of your existing door, please take a moment to look through the door safety checklist.


1. Does the door have the adequate protection designed to prevent the personal injury or property damage that could be caused by breaking springs?

SAFETY TIP: Check your door carefully to make sure the springs are either enclosed by a metal tube, use a safety containment cable or both.  Extension spring doors incorporate a safety containment cable which prevents a snapping spring from flying free and causing injury or damage. Torsion spring doors, the spring is installed around the torsion shaft so that, if a spring should break, it cannot snap free and cause damage or injury. 

2. Are your able to loosen the bottom brackets of the garage door?

SAFETY TIP: Garage door bottom brackets are under extreme tension and can cause serious injury if deliberately or accidentally loosened or removed by someone inexperienced in garage door installation or maintenance. All Clopay garage residential steel doors feature our patented Safe-T-Bracket™ which, under normal circumstances, cannot be removed while the door is under tension, thus significantly reducing the risk of serious injury.

3.Have you checked the spring on your garage door ?

SAFETY TIP: Beware of old springs. Keep in mind that garage door springs are tightly wound and under high tension. Eventually, all springs will wear out and break. A breaking spring that is not properly contained could lash out and strike property or people. If you have an older garage door, be certain your springs are inspected and replaced by a professional installer if needed. If your door has two springs, replace both, even if one is not broken. This will not only prevent any damage caused by the breaking of the second spring, but also keep your door working efficiently.

4. To ensure safe installation, are the services of a professional installer required for standard torsion spring door installation?

SAFETY TIP: Manual winding of a torsion spring during installation or adjustment is extremely difficult and potentially dangerous. Until recently, torsion spring doors could only be safely installed by trained professionals. 

5. Does the garage door opener have a reversing mechanism and is it in working order?

SAFETY TIP: A faulty or improperly adjusted reversing mechanism on your garage door opener could cause damage to your car or even injure a child or pet that inadvertently gets caught in the way of the closing door. All garage door openers manufactured and installed after 1991 are required to have a reversing mechanism. Many of these can be installed by the do-it-yourselfer. However, we recommend that you have your garage door opener professionally installed, and that you check it periodically, to ensure that the reversing mechanism is in proper working order.

Reversing mechanisms activated by contact can prevent most potential damage or injuries caused by a garage door closing automatically. Properly working "photo eyes" now offer an added safety guard but, if bumped or jarred in any way, photo eyes may be disabled. Required on all garage door openers manufactured and installed after 1993, photo eyes are connected to the bottom of the track and reverse the door when an infrared beam is broken. Safety is improved because nothing actually has to make contact with the door before it reverses. We recommend that you have your garage door opener professionally installed and tested periodically to ensure that it is working properly.

6. Are the installation instructions clear and easy to understand?

SAFETY TIP: Although the task may seem daunting to the novice, installing a garage door is not necessarily a difficult or dangerous project. However, many do-it-yourselfers attempt the job without fully comprehending the installation instructions. Being fully informed about garage door installation prior to starting the job can help prevent injuries and save considerable time. Remember that access to the garage will be unavailable for up to 8 hours during the installation process, so plan accordingly.

7. Is your wall control panel mounted five feet above the floor?

SAFETY TIP: Children playing with the wall control panels of your automatic garage door opener can lead to accidents that might cause either personal injury or property damage. We recommend that you educate your child about the potential dangers of playing with the wall control panel. As an added safety measure, we recommend mounting your wall control panel at least five feet above the floor, out of the reach of young children.

8. Are the remote controls for the garage door out of the reach of children?

SAFETY TIP: Accidents can occur when children play with the remote controls for an automatic garage door opener. Again, we recommend keeping your remote controls out of the reach of children and educating your children about the potential dangers associated with these mechanisms and the garage doors they operate.

9. Does the opener have rolling access code technology?

SAFETY TIP: Many homes have been broken into and burglarized by thieves using universal controls that open the garage door by reading the access code in the opener. Rolling access code technology is one way to protect your home, family and belongings against thieves and intruders. Rolling access code technology changes the code of your automatic opener after every use, so the thieves' universal controls are rendered useless.

10. Have you had your garage door professionally inspected in the last year?

SAFETY TIP: Your garage door is probably the largest moving part in your home and is typically used every day. Over time, parts can wear out and break, creating potential safety problems. Although there are some light maintenance duties and inspections you can perform yourself, industry experts recommend that you have your garage door professionally serviced at least once a year to ensure maximum safety and to increase the life of your door.

11. Are there any frayed or worn strips hanging loose from the spring system?

SAFETY TIP:If the cables that attach from the spring system to the bottom bracket on either side of your garage door have frayed or worn strips hanging loose, your cables are in danger of breaking, which could cause serious injury or property damage. Have the cables inspected immediately by a trained professional who is aware of the potential dangers from spring tension.

12. Does your door go up and down smoothly when manually operated?

SAFETY TIP: A garage door that does not go up and down smoothly when manually operated probably has a spring system that is out of balance and could cause premature wear and tear on your door's hardware. Depending on how worn the spring is, it may need to be adjusted or replaced. For greater safety and operating performance, we recommend calling a trained service professional.

If you have any other questions, just EMAIL us or CALL us using the links at the top of this page!

Fast & fair torsion spring, gears, garage door & opener repair

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Prescheduled evening or weekend service at no extra charge!   NOTE: We carry replacement parts for nearly all make and model garage doors and electric openers!